Mission, Vision, Values

Our Mission

BARKA empowers the people of Burkina Faso to thrive. We do this by partnering with communities to break the poverty cycle…permanently. BARKA’s work focuses on the following high-impact areas:

  • Water – we provide access to clean water, improved sanitation, and hygiene education for schools and communities (WASH initiatives)
  • Women – we empower women and girls in all our programs
  • Agroecology – we help local farmers combat climate change through agroecology and sustainable agriculture

Embedded in everything we do is a focus on reciprocity. BARKA serves as a bridge between individuals, schools and communities of Burkina Faso and the United States to facilitate greater understanding, cultural exchange and the co-creation of a culture of peace.

BARKA serves as an advocate for indigenous people in Burkina, forming long-term relationships with village communities. Our projects are driven by the needs of local people, and we foster their autonomy to sustain and own all projects. We combine high and low-tech, using indigenous and modern techniques to implement cost-effective, high impact and culturally appropriate solutions.

Our Vision

For the entire nation of Burkina Faso to have:

  • Clean drinking water
  • Improved sanitation
  • Knowledge of basic hygiene principles
  • Empowered women and girls to lead the community
  • Skills to mitigate and adapt to climate change

For developed nations and development agencies, our vision is one in which indigenous culture and rights are respected, development is implemented with “free, prior and informed consent”, and isn’t simply about the rich helping the poor, but is about developing a reciprocal relationship of mutual benefit in which our collective gifts are able to be recognized, valued and shared with each other for a sustainable future.

Our Values

  • We start with water because it is the fundamental building block of life; water involves sanitation, healthcare, sustainable agriculture, good governance, and women’s empowerment.
  • We practice a holistic, integrated approach to poverty reduction.
  • Charity is obsolete- reciprocity, and how we can benefit from each other, is the new development paradigm
  • We partner with indigenous villages and are led by their needs
  • We are inter-generational, inter-disciplinary, inter-cultural, and interfaith
  • We form long term, personal relationships
  • We combine high and low-tech, and use both indigenous and modern techniques to find cost-effective, high-impact, culturally appropriate solutions
  • We use theatre as a means to educate, entertain, and reinforce key social messages
  • Sustainability is the goal in everything we do
  • We empower those with whom we work to become self –sustaining
  • Local culture and traditional arts are an integral part of our approach
  • BARKA serves as an advocate for indigenous people